FFA Cup Match Preview: Wollongong Wolves v Central Coast Mariners

Wollongong Wolves and Central Coast Mariners will go head-to-head in FFA Cup Round of 16 action at WIN Stadium on Wednesday night.

Wednesday’s match will be the second time these sides have battled it out in the national rounds with a Glen Trifiro strike proving decisive in a hard-fought 1-0 win for the Mariners when the sides met in the Round of 32 in 2014.

Luke Wilkshire’s side booked their spot in the Round of 16 for the first time with a 3-0 win over Mount Druitt Town Rangers thanks to goals from Peter Simonoski, Bilal Beladki and Lachlan Scott.

Wollongong’s Round of 32 win came nearly two years after they booked their spot in the national rounds by defeating Queensland’s Lions FC to be crowned NPL Champions of Australia in 2019.

Wolves' side contains two former A-League players including ex-Mariner, Josh McDonald, and Lachlan Scott who topped the goalscoring charts for Wollongong in the league this season alongside Leroy Jennings with six goals.

The Mariners also secured their passage to the Round of 16 with a win over NPL NSW opposition, defeating Blacktown City 1-0 at Glen Willow Stadium in Mudgee thanks to a strike on debut from Beni N’Kololo.

Wednesday’s match marks the Mariners second trip to WIN Stadium in the space of five days, having suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Wellington Phoenix in their Round Two Isuzu UTE A-League Men’s clash in Wollongong on Saturday night.

Central Coast sit fifth at this early stage of the 2021/22 season having picked up three points from their opening day derby win over Newcastle Jets.

Mariners Head Coach, Nick Montgomery, will be more than familiar with Wollongong having spent the 2017 & 2018 NPL NSW seasons as a player with the Wolves before hanging up the boots and returning to the Mariners as the club’s Head of Academy.

Central Coast have twice been on the wrong end of a ‘Cupset’, being dumped out of the cup at the hands of Green Gully and Blacktown City in the Round of 32 in 2016 & 2017 respectively.

The Gosford outfit's best ever cup run has seen them twice reach the Semi Finals in 2014 & 2019, where they were defeated by Adelaide United on both occasions.

You can catch all the action from Wednesday’s match live and free via 10 Play.

FFA Cup 2021 Round of 16

Wollongong Wolves vs Central Coast Mariners
Wednesday, 1 December 2021, 7:30pm AEDT
Venue: WIN Stadium, Wollongong
Broadcast: Live & free via 10 Play
Tickets: Buy here

How to watch the FFA Cup in 2021